The following article discusses relevant safety and efficacy issues when deciding how best to approach the removal of mercury amalgam dental fillings.
1. Have an electrical reading of your amalgams done by a naturopath or dentist experienced in this area. An electrical current reading gives a general idea of the speed of electrochemical reactions occurring on the surface of the fillings. It also reflects the conditions that encourage conversion of elemental mercury into methyl mercury. The higher the negative charge, the faster the conversion rate. Positive charges are still detrimental but are of a lower priority. There is no safe level of mercury in the body, thus even if a filling may not be leaking much today, it is only a matter of time before leakage accelerates and health problems develop.
Charges may change within days, depending on the level of corrosion on the filling surface. The more serious the health challenge, the more important is the sequence of removal and testing may need to be repeated before each session. The sequence should be followed as closely as possible, most negative to least negative, then most positive to least positive. The goal is to remove the fillings that are exposing the body to the highest levels of mercury first.
Although there is some debate as to whether electrical testing is valid, it is important that at least either the biggest fillings or the fillings most likely to leak are removed as soon as possible. Such leakage can amount to more than half the total amount of mercury originally present in the filling. Where did this mercury go?
As an additional precaution, many dentists recommend not crossing the midline of the mouth during a session to reduce disruption to the nervous and meridian systems tied-in with the teeth. In such cases it is common practice to remove amalgams no more than one quadrant or side at a time, following the removal sequence as faithfully as possible.
2. Get tested for biocompatibility of replacement filling materials. Some replacement materials may cause other health problems. As an example, some materials contain slow-release fluoride, which destroys the immune system. More information on fluoride can be found in "Fluoride Suspected of Harmful Side Effects” by Dr Sir John Whitman Ray in “The Patient’s Guide to Body Electronics”.
There is no single material that is universally biocompatible for everyone. Ideally, a serum (i.e. blood) compatibility test should be performed, but an EAV, MORA or LISTEN compatibility test is better than no test. Generally, composite resin materials such as the “Diamond” range are safe bets in the absence of testing. Avoid the use of metals wherever possible (especially nickel and copper). Even gold can be incompatible, owing to the fact that gold is only used as an amalgam with other often toxic metals.
3. Start dietary supplementation according to your test results at least one or two weeks before amalgam removal. This will accelerate mercury excretion (both elemental and methyl forms) from the body. Follow-up testing for toxicity will help identify how long a special nutritional programme should be followed after amalgam removal.
4. Avoid the 7-14-21 day immune cycle by not having removals performed on the same day each week. The immune system is weak on these days as “the guard is changed” from old immune cells to new cells. Also avoid removal on the 7th, 14th or 21st day after some other immune challenge such as a flu or other illness. According to Dr Hal Huggins, the “echo” of old challenges remains in the body for at least this long.
5. Use a dentist who does not place mercury or fluoride fillings (to minimise your exposure to mercury in their office and as a measure of their commitment to your health) and preferably one who has taken special precautions in their office to avoid further exposure to mercury vapour.
These include: special air-purifying ventilation systems, additional exhaust ducting in the immediate vicinity of the patient (sometimes hand held), high volume suction and high volume cold water irrigation equipment handled by an assistant (in addition to the cold water irrigation from the drill itself), the use of non-toxic paints, carpeting and furnishings, etc. As a benchmark to assess how seriously your dentist regards mercury toxicity, if they take few precautions for themselves, such as wearing protective gear like face masks, they probably mistakenly consider the risk low.
6. Many amalgam removal specialists recommend the use of a “rubber dam”. This is basically a piece of thin latex rubber stretched across your mouth with only the teeth being worked on exposed to the air. This minimises the possibility of any splashes of mercury being ingested inhaled during drilling. Do not attempt to breathe through the mouth so as to avoid inhalation of any mercury vapour which may build up beneath the dam. If oxygen is available through a nose piece, use it. Some dentists consider the dam unnecessary in favour of special high volume irrigation and suction equipment as above. Let the dentist use the equipment, techniques and materials they are most experienced with but make it absolutely clear that no mercury inhalation or ingestion is acceptable. 80-100% of inhaled mercury vapour is absorbed by the lungs and enters the bloodstream, where it can be distributed to all parts of the body.
7. Due to its extreme volatility, mercury vapour pressure doubles with every 10°C increase in temperature. Therefore precautions to limit this temperature rise should be employed. Continual cold water irrigation and sectioning each filling into chunks to reduce temperature rise from excessive grinding are two such precautions.
8. Ensure complete mercury removal. In some cases mercury has been found beneath composite fillings, in root canals (root-filled teeth) and in the gums (amalgam tattoo).
9. There are a variety of intravenous chelation and immune support compounds that can be administered during and after the actual dentistry. These substances have a high bonding affinity for mercury and are intended to specifically target the removal of residual mercury from body tissues to facilitate elimination. Although some of these compounds may be of a suppressing nature, it should be carefully considered as to what the highest good is at the time of amalgam removal. After amalgam removal, the dietary programme should include some form of chelation substance such as “DMSA” (2,3-Dimercaptosuccinic Acid) until testing confirms that all mercury has been released from the body. An excellent dietary programme accelerates this process dramatically.
10. Look for a dentist or clinic that can offer an integrated care package of testing, nutritional advice, dentistry and follow up testing. No chances should be taken with amalgam removal if any improvement is to be expected.
11. Avoid exposure to mercury from other sources such as fish, paints, cosmetics and some medications.
12. If there is any doubt as to why all metals (particularly mercury) should be removed from your mouth, read “12 Points on Mercury Toxicity” by Dr Sir John Whitman Ray and books such as “It’s All in Your Head” and “Uninformed Consent” by Dr Hal Huggins, “Silver Dental Fillings, The Toxic Time Bomb” by Sam Ziff, and “A Patient’s Guide to Mercury-Amalgam Toxicity” by Dr Roy B Kupsinel.
Want to Read More on Mercury Toxicity and Detoxification??
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